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New Study in Journal of Pediatrics Suggests Synagis (Palivizumab),May Reduce Subsequent Recurrent Wheezing in Preterm Infants

Prophylaxis with Synagis Decreases Incidence of Recurrent Wheeze by Almost Half

ABBOTT PARK, Ill. and GAITHERSBURG, Md., June 29, 2007 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Abbott and MedImmune today announced results of a new study, published in the July issue of Journal of Pediatrics, showing that treatment with Synagis(R) (palivizumab) may reduce recurrent wheezing in premature infants by almost half.

Specifically, the study showed that premature infants without chronic lung disease who received Synagis prior to the study had a 49 percent reduction in the incidence of recurrent wheezing compared to preterm infants who did not receive Synagis. The two-year study also found a 51 percent reduction in the incidence of physician-diagnosed recurrent wheezing in the Synagis group compared to untreated infants.

Wheezing is a whistling sound made by air passing through airways narrowed by inflammation or muscle spasms. Children who wheeze are frequently seen by physicians to determine the cause of their wheezing.

Synagis is a biologic therapy known as a monoclonal antibody administered monthly to premature infants to prevent serious lower respiratory tract infection caused by respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), a leading cause of viral respiratory infection among infants.

According to the World Health Organization, 64 million people are infected with RSV each year, and 160,000 will die from this disease. Approximately one-half of all infants are infected with RSV during the first year of life, and nearly all children have been infected at least once by the time they reach their second birthday.

'With this new study we see that, by preventing the most serious forms of RSV infections from progressing to its most serious form, Synagis may help protect premature children without chronic lung disease from recurrent wheezing in the first few years of life,' said Eric Simoes, MD, professor, Department
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